Where law is lawful, decision-makers must comply with the law. If administrative justice is to be achieved in the global space, administrative decision-makers must be committed to ‘legality’, meaning that their decisions are consistent with the existing body of law. A comparative analysis of prevailing functional understandings of administrative justice reveals that it contains a requirement that administrative decisions be made ‘according to law’. Global administrative justice requires cohesiveness, and cohesiveness implies stability, or an anchor to which standards can be tethered. If a requirement for decisions to be made according to law is incorporated into a model of global administrative justice, that anchor becomes the legal framework under which administrative decisions are made. The existing law in the global space, which is defined as international law, domestic law and institutional law, intersects with the United Nations to create legal obligations for its administrative decision-making.
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Edited by Julien Chaisse
When administrative decision-making is removed from the domestic context and placed somewhere where no framework for administrative law exists, how can we assure that our rights are protected and the rule of law is respected? Administrative law does not exist doctrinally outside of the domestic context, yet administrative decision-making occurs in the ‘global space’ and within the United Nations (UN) in particular. Administrative decisions in the global space are those decisions that are made by international institutions in the exercise of formal power, which create, amend or affect the rights, interests or obligations of individuals or groups, as opposed to States. When the ability to ensure that decisions are lawful, rational, fair, transparent and allow for participation is denied, an accountability deficit emerges. It is suggested that accountability of administrative decision-making within the UN could be conceptualised through the public law concept of administrative justice.